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Making the Most of your Practice

There are many services available to help you to stay healthy. Some of these services can be accessed directly (see below), and for others you need to be registered with a GP Practice (Surgery).

  • When you wish to consult a GP about your medical condition, you need to contact the Surgery with which you are registered to arrange to be seen. If you go along to the Surgery and do not have an appointment, you may not be seen. The Practice may ask you to come back at another time, or may suggest that you are seen by another Healthcare Professional.
  • When you see your GP about a medical condition, she or he may arrange for further tests to be carried out. If so, they will explain the arrangements for these tests and how you will get the results. These tests may be carried out within the Practice or at another medical facility.
  • If your GP thinks that you need to be seen by a Specialist Doctor or other Healthcare Professional, she or he will refer you. You cannot make an appointment to see an NHS Specialist without being referred by your GP.
  • If you require medicine the GP will give you a prescription to take to a Pharmacy, who will supply the medicine to you.
  • If you have a preference for either a male or a female GP please check with the Practice before you register, as some practices may have only male or only female Doctors.
  • The Practice can arrange for an Interpreter if required, who may work either face-to-face or by telephone.
  • If you need to use the Interpreting Service please ask the Receptionist to arrange this when making your appointment, as Interpreters must usually be booked in advance of your visit to your GP.
  • If someone else is contacting the Practice on your behalf, please remind them to ask the Receptionist to book an Interpreter.

Help your Practice to help You  

Practices can be busy places and staff try hard to accommodate their patients – in return you are asked to behave in a polite and considerate manner. It would be appreciated if you would help your Practice keep surgeries running smoothly and ensure that patients are seen at the right time, by:

  • When you have an appointment please attend at the time stated, and if you are not able to attend please let the Practice know in advance, so the appointment can be used by someone else who needs it.
  • If you do not attend appointments, the Practice may deregister you. This means that you would stop being a patient of that Practice and would no longer be seen by them.
  • If more than one member of your family needs to see the Doctor or other Healthcare Professional, please book one appointment per patient.
  • If you have to discuss a complex medical issue please let the Receptionist know so a suitable length of appointment can be arranged.
  • Please notify the Practice if you change your address, telephone or mobile phone number.

Other help available

  • Cough or cold, or if your child has a minor ailment – your Pharmacist may be able to help you
  • Eye problem – you should go to an Optometrist
  • Dental problem – consider visiting a Dentist
  • Foot problem – you can access our Podiatry Services
  • Specialist consultation – your GP will refer you

If you become unwell when your surgery is closed, please dial the Surgery number as normal and your call will be transferred to the Out of Hours Service or alternatively you may be given another telephone number to call.

There are Minor Injuries Units at most hospitals where staff will assess minor injuries such as sprains, burns and simple fractures and either treat them or, if they find a more serious problem, arrange for you to be seen by the most appropriate Healthcare Professional.